STEPHEN FREARS Biography - Theater, Opera and Movie personalities


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Name: Stephen Arthur Frears                                                             
Born: 20 June 1941 Leicester, England                                                   
Stephen Arthur Frears (born 20 June 1941) is an two-time Oscar-nominated English         
film director.                                                                           
Frears was born in Leicester, England to an Anglican father and a Jewish mother.         
Educated at Gresham's School, Norfolk, from 1954 to 1959, he went on to study           
law at Trinity College, Cambridge, between 1960 and 1963. However, after                 
Cambridge his initial career was in television where he contributed to several           
high-profile series such as the BBC's Play for Today.                                   
In the mid-1980s he came to prominence as an important director of British and           
later American films. His first film was the 1972 Gumshoe. But it was his               
production of the one-off drama My Beautiful Laundrette for Channel 4 in 1985           
that led to his notice as a capable film director when the production was               
released theatrically to great acclaim.                                                 
He next directed another successful British film, the Joe Orton biopic Prick Up         
Your Ears in 1987, followed by a second film from a Hanif Kureshi screen play,           
Sammy and Rosie Get Laid. The following year he made his Hollywood debut with           
Dangerous Liaisons. Frears had another critical success with The Grifters, for           
which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director but suffered a           
major box office disappointment with Hero, starring Dustin Hoffman. He was also         
nominated for a Razzie Award for his direction of Mary Reilly, released in 1996.         
He has since directed a number of successful films in both Britain and America,         
including The Hi-Lo Country (1998), High Fidelity (2000), Dirty Pretty Things (2003)     
and Mrs Henderson Presents starring Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins. In recent years         
he has also occasionally returned to directing for television, perhaps most             
notably helming The Deal, a dramatised account of the alleged deal between Tony         
Blair and Gordon Brown to decide which of them should become leader of the               
Labour Party in 1994, for Channel 4 in 2003. His latest film, The Queen, was             
nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. It was also made for                   
television but was given a cinematic release; it achieved immense critical               
acclaim, box office success and awards. Frears himself received his second Oscar         
nomination for his direction of the film and Dame Helen Mirren won the Oscar for         
Best Actress in a Leading Role. In 1987, Frears teamed up with actor Adrian             
Edmondson for Mr Jolly Lives Next Door, also starring Peter Cook for a 45 minute         
programme from the cult series The Comic Strip Presents. In 1985 he had also             
directed a Comic Strip parody of Rebecca with the usual Comic Strip ensemble.           
Frears has also directed two films based on stories by Roddy Doyle, The Snapper         
and The Van.                                                                             
Frears holds the "David Lean Chair in Fiction Direction" from the National Film         
and Television School in Beaconsfield, England where he teaches frequently.